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mki last won the day on July 4 2017

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About mki

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  1. Eye Fatigue

    I do not suggest eye drops for eye strain and neither does my eye doctor. The second part, yes absolutely. I was personally dealing with eye strain for a long time. I posted about this awhile ago here: I can't quote myself across threads easily: "LOL headaches?... When everything starts strobing, your eyes are red, hurt, you get double vision, and then what you are trying to read turns into Chinese, let me know. Tip: When this sh-- starts, don't put eye drops in and think you're fine. You're hiding the symptoms and it will be much, much worse when the drops wear off." As far as the drops, maybe once in a while but certainly not regularly. I got a new monitor and it really did help dramatically. Again, low blue light. Then I just stopped doing work on my computer, starting outsourcing everything, and I just post to forums instead of doing work. My vision basically went back to normal during this time period and eyes stopped bothering me. That was fun but I'm officially opening my store tomorrow, so yeah... If I disappear from here and don't come back, it was nothing personal, but I'm probably not going to have time... Or if I do have time, I'll probably be on some dating app/facebook and not here.
  2. Organizing your AdWords ad groups

    Edit: self replaced rant with something constructive. Yeah, I completely agree you need a ton of optimization and organization, or it doesn't really work, since your competition is most likely doing it. You have to understand that it's competitive space and you really need to have as much control over the campaign as you can. The product groups for PLA are the same situation, you really shouldn't have more then 10 or so products in a group, and you have to control everything with optimization, as best as you can. Honestly, to get the most control, you can just put each product in it's own group. For PLA, the right way to do it, is to have two separate campaigns based upon search intent (or more), all of the products have to be carefully grouped, and optimized. Since you can't target keywords specifically, which would make way more sense, it's critical to optimize the feeds based upon the search intent and negative keyword everything else away. So as an example, one group with low buyer intent keywords (more general) and one with high buyer intent keywords (really specific, like "canon eos rebel t6" which is a great place to get started, negative all the general keywords away.) So something like: Note: this isn't perfect, I just made this up now. [canon eos] [canon eos rebel] review refurbished used [Digital Camera] [Digital Cameras] The first two because there are different models (generic), the middle 3 because they don't make sense, and the last two since people who type those generic searches are probably not going to buy a $500 camera, so you get tons of traffic and no sales. The last two are exact because I'm okay with "canon eos rebel t6 digital camera". The ad will run on "digital cameras" without the negative keyword since it's the taxonomy associated for that product. Unfortunately, you really do need to do this for every product and watch your analytics like a hawk and add more if necessary. Also, once the ad starts running, I recommend you fire off a bunch of test searches and add more if necessary. You wouldn't think that you would need the condition related keywords since there's a field for that in the data feed, but if you check, Google doesn't seem to use it. "canon eos rebel t6 refurbished" the first ad is for a brand new camera. Even though you can't target keywords, you have to, so you need to understand where the ad will run, and be able to predict the keywords you need to negative, and it would be great, if they gave impression data, which would be good, but they don't, so you just kind of know a head of time, somehow. (I don't feel like explaining the process of circling in an out of the keyword tool, but the keywords it picks for the ads aren't magical. There's a system to it. Knowing this, you can actually target keywords, just not irrelevant ones. The exact data in the feed, including taxonomies, are the keywords, along with semantically similar keywords. Again, it would have been great to know that before I put money into my adwords account.) As an example here: Google: Hose Fail. There's 10,000 different kinds of hose... This traffic is junk and somebody is probably paying 50 cents a click for it. Negative keyword: [hose] So for a store with 1,000 products, you end up with at least 20 data points that need optimization, per product. With about 10 products per group, that's 100 groups, each of which need about 5 or more negative keywords, then you have two campaigns per product, so this is big fun stuff, and I'm so happy that the Google reps were so happy to help me get my account open and not really explain how to actually make money PLA ads. Trust me, from experience, if you just import your product feed and hit go, you will explode money at an astonishing rate, since Google volume ($$$) optimizes your campaign for you. Which is exactly what all small businesses are looking for... To have their business website flooded with low buyer intent traffic at their max CPC bid. All I was trying to say here is that 20 groups is honestly nothing compared to the optimization required for Google's other wonderful advertising solution. Now that somebody actually explained to me what needs to be done, with out Google's special brand of circle-speak, it's not bad, but wow... Expectations were a little different compared to reality... Edit: Oh and, to give you an idea how much this stuff matters (since the gurus always throw around numbers that are totally unrealistic.) My real numbers: Unoptimized: Daily Spend: $100USD daily. Conversion Rate: < .2% Average CPC: $0.40, very rough estimated CPS: $200 Optimized by doing nothing but negativing all of the taxonomies and generic keywords. (Still not correctly optimized.) Daily Spend: $5 daily max, honestly usually less, like $3. Conversion Rate: ~.70%. Average CPC: $0.11, very rough estimated CPS: $20 So, I know I've read from some gurus that optimizations can lead to 100% decrease in cost per sale, uh yeah, in reality it's actually more like 2000%+. So don't think it doesn't matter that much, actually it's mega super important.
  3. Yeah, it's definitely https. I found a forum post somewhere where a person had the exact same issue. Apparently cpanel gives you free SSL certificates now and when WHM updated it installed the certificate (this is all news to me.) Glad it wasn't a site that I cared about. I was going try to figure out how to remove the certificate and was like, yeah uh, I have better things to do with my time. It's probably better at this point to convert the site the https, but some wordpress plugins weren't cooperating and mozilla firefox was displaying an insecure site because the images were still on the http site. I ended up flipping the site back to nonsecure and logged out. Now that I think about it, I probably just needed to dump the cache. Thanks for responding, gaining incite into these odd problems is sometimes difficult. Especially when you have a small army of old sites on 30 different hosting accounts, and it's not all completely consistent.
  4. I think I figured it out. My site is responding to SSL requests with a nonexistent certificate.
  5. This is really strange. One of my sites that I don't particularly care about, the data in the search console is totally broken. In the report: for two months, it's saying the impression and click volume dropped to virtually nothing and then after that there's just a big gap in the data. There's no data after that at all for about two months. My server logs don't agree. It does appear the site lost some positions and is getting less traffic, but I can still easily see the site ranking on page 1 on various keywords. I've personally never seen anything like this before. I'm not concerned or anything, but it's really strange. In the search console, it looks exactly like the site was hit by a penalty, but it's not penalized ... Edit: Initially I kind of freaked out and was thinking, "why the hell would that have gotten penalized?!? Tiny little site getting 500 visits a month..." - The issue only seems to be effecting the search console data... Edit: There's a bunch of weird stuff going on. The number of pages it says are indexed are broken as well, they're all there... In certain date ranges I have clicks but no impressions? I've seen gaps in the data plenty of times but this is bizarre. Also: I'm just posting this in the case other people are having issues. This isn't something where I have any intentions on trying to fix this. It's not important.
  6. Bond rates are up.

    The purpose, at least for me, is more to counteract inflation to a degree.
  7. Bond rates are up.

    I do fall in that age range but I'm honestly more concerned with safe investments and time investments that require a lot of specialized knowledge, since those seem to always out earn anything the markets could ever offer. Kind of going Sideways here: So yesterday I started working on a content marketing plan and Brain Dean apparently made a new video about his "Guest o Graphics" technique, which to be clear is nothing but the "infographics technique" that Brain attached buzz words to. I figured why over complicate things (which I do a lot), and I might as well start with that. If you think about that in investment terms, okay so: 3 days of work + $200 for a designer +100$ for BuzzStream = (8X30X3)+200+100=$1020. Just say $1000. I'm not going to make up any fantasy conversion rates here, but say the campaign lands 10 links. Over 5-10 years, that investment in time and money, would most likely obliterate anything other than those highly infrequent situations where a stock falls to basically nothing, then recovers. The biggest limiting factor here for me is 'how to do it fast enough' where it's worth it in relatively short term gains, because that would be sick. And I would probably be more willing to pull the trigger on spending a bunch of money to get it done at high speed, if I just believed there was no risk. For whatever reason, I would rather take bigger risks, then minor risks. If I could figure out how some of these companies are building 1k+ quality links/month, I would absolutely all-in on that instantly.
  8. Bond rates are up.

    I don't invest all of my money that way... I have investments in metals as well and I'm perfectly aware of the fact that the yields are not the best. I purchased silver at around 15.50 and with the fees, I'm pretty confident I wouldn't actually make any money if I sold it today. This is my personal opinion: I don't own any stocks (other than shares in private companies and the earnings are almost purely dividends) or ETFs at the moment since I have this really odd feeling that it's not the right time, or that it's about to be a bad time, and I don't wake up at 2:30am to analyze the pre-market conditions, so I don't really have the ability to get out fast enough if things go badly... I really just don't understand what's going on with the current markets, so I'm sitting it out. I'm up 14% net for the year on that money. Most of that came from buying and selling Ultra S&P500 daily and the last trade I made I basically broken even and through to myself "That's good. Great. I think I'm done now." Mhmm. You're trading gains for low risk. I don't personally get why people dump all of their retirement money into stocks when they have low equity in property. I get that if things work out, they might look like a financial genius, but if things go the other way, the look like a financial idiot. I just have this odd feeling that the markets are running up based upon predictions (from Goldman Sachs) and it's not about realities. But, WTF do I know? There's way too many variables.
  9. Yeah, I know, it's a cluster bomb of fail. I've personally never disclosed networks to Google. There's definitely a "knowing your role" and "knowing what your goals are" thing going on there. The only reason I went looking into networks, was to learn about what people were doing, so I could personally do better. With that said, I'm still seeing a lot of garbage networks, not as many, but to me it's obvious that Google doesn't have a way to figure this out with an algorythm, at least not when the sites are setup correctly on different IPs/hosts and the network sites don't like spam when looking at them individually. What I'm trying to say here: an experienced SEO might know instantly it's a PBN site but Google can't do that...
  10. Trying to help you out here but some general issues I've personally encountered with product variations: fishing reels - these have ratios that actually matter, but there's very rarely any explanation on ecommerce pages. You're just suppose to know the application and purpose for a (as an example) 6.3:1 ratio fishing reel. This might be okay for pros, but it's really inconvenient for most people and it's going to draw traffic away from the product pages while they Google that information, as often times, that's the only significant variation for a specific reel. (So there's the same reels with 3 different ratio variations and hand variations.) There's also other things to know too, depending on what exactly you are fishing for. Again, this isn't a big deal to people who are really into fishing, but most of the buyers have no idea what's going on. So it's not that the product descriptions are inadequate, you just really need detailed user guides adjacent to the descriptions for 80% of the buyers to read, ideally in links. This type of issue also occurs with compound bows. The bows are suppose to be customized to the user and although this isn't particularly difficult to do yourself, on ecommerce sites, nothing is ever explained. This leaves people to just go to their local hunting specialty store to have it all explained to them, regarding what draw weight, what axle to axle length, and what grain arrows are recommended. This minor variation effect is one of the main reasons why I personally feel my PLA campaigns failed (and badly.) Simply put, Google can't make the decisions for people and since the product images are literally identical, Google consistently served ads for the wrong product variations. At the end of the day, these minor variations present a big point of friction for buyers. Another thing I can think of would be like canoe/paddle-board/standup paddle-board paddle lengths. To an amateur, it's not that critical, to somebody serious, it's gotta be the right length and having those charts there is important. Not related to my business but Ryan Stewart from (no comment about him or his agency) mentioned several times how important it was to put a sizing chart for shoe laces on his "demonstration ecommerce store" where he sells shoelaces over at I don't really agree with everything that Ryan says but I definitely agree with his ideas on having the quick sizing chart extremely easily accessible. Nobody knows that stuff, so it's really important. Obviously the products look identical, but it's minor variations again. As far as your column, Ryan's example is probably the best since I think everybody knows a little bit about shoelaces, so it's more relatable. It really is a big point of friction; they want to buy it but don't understand the differences between the minor variations, if they can't figure it out in a few seconds, it's going to really hard to make a sale there.
  11. Bond rates are up.

    I don't know if anybody here makes investments in bonds but if you have money laying around and don't plan to use it for awhile, bond rates are up. 5 year note yield is @ 1.932 today. Obviously better than the money market yield.
  12. It can't, that's not how it works. Google doesn't analyze domains. The algorythm looks exclusively at pages and links. As far as having penguin, which does operate at a domain level, automatically penalize domains when a page with irrelevant links, decides to link to it: that would be a total nightmare... Your 'fix' is much more problematic then the issue. That would create black-hat negative SEO networks and it would be way cheaper to get your competition penalized then build a network that actually improves rankings. Again, those weren't strong domains and Google isn't the internet police. They can't create a situation where once a domain is used, it's worthless once it expires. There's 325 million+ registered domains, the problem is less than 1%, probably more like .1%. There's no good solution, any way they do this and the SEOs that are forward thinking, aren't really building PBNs like that anyways. If the network is comprised of fresh registered domains+white hat SEO(stuff like guest posts), acquisition (buying established sites), and domains won at auction (no record of the drop because it didn't) and the old site was rebuilt (people rebuild sites all the time), well then now what the hell does Google do? It's almost better for them to leave "an easy button" so they can find the people doing it. Trust me, the people who are building quality networks in a manner that is evasive, are not getting caught. The people who recognized that there is a demand for rankings and are selling low quality products, are the people getting caught. Like I said earlier, the ps4 site, appears to have been penalized by penguin in 2014, at least partially in searches. They didn't totally break it, but it's failing some penalty tests I personally do, so yeah fail. There's no reason for Google staff to waste time on sites that their "penalty robot" already hit. In Google's mind, there's a perception issue here, the users and the well established sites are not the one's with the problem, it's a single SEO, on their product forums, that seems to have an issue.
  13. They don't allow PBNs and they do penalize them from time to time. Since that network was exposed, Google will most likely look into it, and either penalize the network, or what they usually do, which is leave the network intact and penalize the sites using it. Which is much worse, since they can just penalize new sites that use it, and the old sites that used it are screwed. If they give the "money site" an unnatural links penalty, they might just keep denying the request for reconsideration until the owner disavows and removes basically every link pointing to the domain and this process could take 6 months to a year. Or they could penalize everything, which is probably better for the SEOs, since they know they're screwed and just get new domains. Why they work: The domains have external links pointed to them, they link to the sites they want to rank, this is how Google works. That really is, the foundation of the algorythm. As far as; shouldn't they be easy for Google to identify: in this case, the PBN wasn't really doing anything Google looks for. So, no. Generally speaking, the people who own PBNs, want them to be difficult to identify. The domains are weak and there's no spam so, it just doesn't really set off any red flags. I only checked the PBNs listed in the first link and those PBNs are crap. All I did was cut and paste the list into a tool, but trust me, they are very weak. I wouldn't even consider buying domains that weak or doing SEO that way in general. It's a junk network as far as I can tell, so it probably flew under their radar. That might work in France but it doesn't really work in the US. So as far as the response: I have a tendency to agree, the links are crap, paying whatever they paid for what appears to be an SEO service, really isn't helping them out as much as they think it is. According to SEMRush, that site isn't really ranking even in France. The anchor texts are definately over optimized and it appears that it's been hit by penguin. Since we are talking about a video game site, in video game terminology: The person complaining is a "Newbsicle" and so are the owners of that network. The algorythm seems to have worked here, it just needs a bit of manual cleanup.
  14. Note: Mirrored paragraphs based upon post excluding this one and the last one. The concept with the content is a funnel and it ranges from purely educational content to content with higher buyer intent. Example: I sell dog toys ( I don't ) Information About Dog Breeds -> Dog Training Information -> Best Dog Toys For Puppies -> Various Dog Toys. I will probably use email collection on all content pages and the links would funnel into the store. Each content page would have the internal links I described earlier (Main Logo Links To Store, Breadcrum stays within Content, MenuBar is within Content, Footer Contains Store Links.) I created a WP theme a few weeks ago that's okay and it follows that structure but I'm going to spend probably another 6-8 hours jerking with the CSS to make it look better. Ideally directly on the product pages but building links into the product pages directly is not that easy to do with purely whitehat seo techniques. Simply put, because I'm not the creator of the products and I'm not offering an affiliate program, there's usually a better place to link. Since content has more perceived value to a site that might link to it compared to a product description, the concept is to do content marketing and then funnel that traffic into the products. This also creates a situation where I can easily leverage the content if the ecommerce business doesn't work out. (I could link to amazon associates as an example.) But generally speaking, all of the traffic is beneficial. It's not, supplier data gets pulled into a database (mysql), I build the inventory csv, then import it into Shopify. When an order fires, I fire a script (PHP) on my end to process it (manually after I have verified it.) This keeps all of the databases synchronized. As far as having employees interacting with the backend, it's a separate process. This is all pieces that fit together but the store itself is a massive piece as it requires most of the attention. Switching ecommerce platforms would be a massive undertaking and I have pre-planned potential size points and exactly how I would do it, but the first size point isn't until annual net sales reach a number with a lot of zeros in it (the best tier 2 solution costs something like 100k for setup + 50k a year + salaries of specialists, the step up from there is to call IBM and I would certainly expect the cost to be 7 figures, after that you need a full team to build it either from the ground up or from a framework like Ruby on Rails, which is exactly what Shopify is, so reinventing the wheel is a really bad choice, it would be cheaper just to pay Shopify 2k a month, which, I think I tried to explain earlier in the thread.) It would take a team of people and it would be a difficult transition and honestly, this isn't going to happen for 2+ years. I'm not sure what that you completely understand what Shopify is. In theory, if you wanted to, you could run an entire ecommerce business from a Shopify account. That would not work for me. Shopify is a platform, you can do as much or as little as much as you want with it. It can be used by people who want to sell 10 items they craft in their basement (granted they need to know liquid, SASS, and HTML unless they just hire a designer), or brands that sell 100k products. After working with the platform as long as I have, I could clone if I wanted to, but I couldn't personally code all of the plugins required in a reasonable amount of time. It's possible, but probably not the best idea. Like I know I said earlier in the thread, Amazon has something crazy like 10 thousand programmers working on their sites. I'm just one person so, some of the solutions are hysterically simplistic, but it works. There's a script I wrote where I actually deleted my email address out of the top of the file before pressing save, in the case anybody ever sees it... It's that bad... But again, it works... I'm in the realm of completely customized stuff here, I could do it either way. I could just build custom menus for the content and a custom template, then apply that template to only the content pages. I could do different templates for different types of content as well. You can do basically anything in theory. I'm not going to do that thought and here's why: It has to do with the separation of roles. I don't want 'bloggers' logging into a store to post content. If they screw the Wordpress site (on the subdomain) it's not that big of a deal. I can just restore it from a backup. I think it would be better in theory to not use a subdomain since it would look a bit more "cohesive" but at the end of the day, I don't think users are going to look at the address and worry about it too much anyways. People use URL shorteners all over social media so most people don't even see the URL they are clicking on anymore anyways. Also, technically, to be fair, www is a subdomain, so vs I mean maybe it's better to keep it separated, just logically speaking. I would probably name the subdomain something like though, or one of a few other ideas I have that's niche related. Unrelated: Literally just got done setting up my office minus getting the printer setup which I will go get tomorrow (I moved my office.) Today's the 29th so whatever I do, I'll probably be launching the content marketing abomination on Monday but then Tuesday is the 4th so yeah. Maybe the 5th we will see. Hopefully nothing else breaks, explodes, there's no more sewer geysers in my basement, and no more family emergencies before then. And then hopefully stuff magically works right since I can't call tech support to get stuff fixed. I still have to audit all of the problems on the site and make a giant list, but I think I'm done with side projects excluding things like updating wordpress.
  15. Thank you for the intelligent response. Without me putting myself and my business into context, this was foolish, which is the problem here. It was inappropriate to ask. I'm not going to apologize for asking again. Don't take this as an insult, but I now have a deeper understanding of the phrase "it's none of your business." This goes both ways and I didn't completely understand that until now. It's not just that providing information does not benefit me, it's that providing information also leads to responses that I legitimately find offensive because obviously, there's no understanding of the complexities of what's going on in the first place. Last time I will do this and I will only do this so you understand: Today something broke with my personal custom integration of multiple B2B platforms and I had to call a customer and I had to apologize personally to them that I couldn't process their order. To me, this is a big deal, because I've permanently ruined my brand's relationship with that person. This is important: Having systems that work for me, my customers, and my employees. I've been working on this for almost a year. Even loose suggestions that I should roll back my business at least 6 months because I can't put blog content in the 'perfect URL location' is absolutely infuriating. I need integrated solutions that work together in a way where I can manage multiple teams of people doing customer service, order processing, content production, marketing, and this all has to be scalable and collapse-able in the unfortunate case that this fails. There's a reason I did this all a certain way and a reason I spent hundreds of hours creating internal documents describing how every process needs to work. The cost of a subdomain and a few hosting accounts doesn't matter... And I have no idea why two people seem to think that's the problem... It's a business and a brand, it's about people, perceptions, and creating value, not about some stupid accounts at an ISP... The responses were so off base compared to what actually matters, I don't even know how to process them. Even the first part of your very first response. Dude I created flow charts, diagrams, massive competitor research database files, lists of topics, folders of research files and swipes. I setup a CRM and NAS+FTP for employees / freelancers to create, track, and manage the process of the creation and marketing of the content. " In addition to the content descriptions, the other content (tutorials for example) can be set up on SEO friendly links, even if they're static web pages. And those of course should link back to the products you're discussing. " Yeah... Uh... I can't say it's bad advice but... The problems I have are not the process, it's effectively managing the processes at scale. This is stuff I'm struggling with wrapping my head around... Man I really have pay $200 a month for a CRM and then hire 3 freelancers for 40 hours a week for a month, just to see how this works out? Wow... Okay... Man that's kind of hard to swallow... Sidenote: that works a lot better when you get 100-250 email prospects and do content marketing, which is yet another process to manage. I literally made a thread in the private section regarding this. No helpful responses yet. Which seems to be par for the course when one tries to do these things, because of what I said before; "It's none of your business." Obviously companies wasted lots of money to test out different systems and they're not going to tell you what works for them, which probably wouldn't matter anyways, since all businesses are completely different anyways. I hope you understand my frustration. I was really hoping somebody had a story like "well we used to have our blog on a subdomain, but then we 301ed to /blog and our users like it a lot better" or "we tried it both ways and we didn't observe any difference" or whatever the outcome was...